Subsonex Paint Preparation

John Stahr (left) and Paul Dye discuss how to handle painting the ailerons.
John Stahr (left) and Paul Dye discuss how to handle painting the ailerons.

Editor-in-Chief Paul Dye's SubSonex jet is completed (after less than three months of building!), the engine has started and performed flawlessly, and a couple of slow taxi tests have occurred without issues. Since the Inspector isn't yet available (largely due to the recent enforced paralysis of that part of the federal government), it is time to paint!

Last night's inspection included examining and discussing the underbelly.
Last night's inspection included examining and discussing the underbelly.

John Stahr of Stahr Design out of nearby Oregon offered a deal that was hard to beat. Not only is he an outstanding airplane painter, he likes to come to the builder's location to do the painting! So, early yesterday evening, John arrived with his tools and the painting process began.

Stahr's equipment and supplies were moved into the shop as one of the first tasks.
Stahr's equipment and supplies were moved into the shop as one of the first tasks.
Overspray can reach the interior so upholstery, panel, and the rest of the interior had to be masked.
Some jobs require three hands and a mouth. (Don't show this to John's dentist!) Overspray can reach the interior so upholstery, panel, and the rest of the interior had to be masked.

Dye and Stahr have been talking for several weeks about the design and John has everything laid out on his computer. So, the first thing was for the two to review the high-resolution drawings in person and look for any lingering discrepancies. Finding none, the next step was Stahr's on-site inspection.

Engine tightly covered to prevent overspray from entering it.
Engine tightly covered to prevent overspray from entering it.

After dinner, it was time to unload Stahr's equipment and supplies, staging them conveniently in the shop. Then, the real work began. Only one part needed to be removed, at least at the start. Dye removed the engine cowling to better ensure a tight and secure "masking". The engine doesn't need any overspray inside of it! Otherwise, it was time to mask. Canopy, engine, and lots of little details on the belly. Enough work for one evening after a long drive from Eugene, Oregon, to Dayton, Nevada. Time for hot chocolate and bed.

Canopy carefully covered... inside and out.
Canopy carefully covered... inside and out.

Louise Hose

Louise Hose is an instrument-rated, commercial pilot who regularly flies her RV-6, her husband’s RV-8, and an RV-3B and a Dream Tundra, which they built together. They live in Dayton Valley Airpark in Nevada. She also edits the monthly, free digital newsletter, The Homebuilder’s Portal by KITPLANES®.

One Reply to “Subsonex Paint Preparation”

  1. WOW 😲 Your project is really coming together. Looking forward to seeing you in the skies soon.

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